This weekend North Yorkshire Police, along with many members of the wider police family are in mourning. They are reflecting on the sad passing of a colleague and friend who like others, left home to serve his community and our society as a whole but, due to his choice of profession, he will never again return home to his family…
This morning many heard, initially via the undoubted power of social media and latterly via mainstream media avenues, that a North Yorkshire police officer was tragically killed on duty last night.
PC Andrew Bramma, aged 32, was tragically killed when his patrol van hit a tree in West Tanfield, near Ripon, on Saturday 5 January 2013. He was on the way to answer an emergency call. Andrew had recently transferred to North Yorkshire from Greater Manchester…(See Book of condolences – North Yorkshire Police)
Obviously and rightly, the expected words of support and condolence were quickly forthcoming but sadly there were also some disparaging and inappropriate comments across both media platforms. One mainstream media report that I read this morning (Daily Mail) had public comments with a roughly 75% – 25% split (at the time of reading). The higher number were thankfully offering words of support but worryingly, the smaller proportion were not. Some media sources I saw during the day even had sick suggestions that in some way, Andrew actually “got what he deserved” for being a cop?
Everyone is shocked and saddened by the news of his death and I speak for every member of the force in extending our heartfelt sympathies to his family, friends and colleagues…(CC Tim Madgwick)
Many of those people commenting probably won’t ever be able to start to comprehend what Andrew’s family and friends are going through right now. Irrespective of your personal views on policing, he was simply a family man with a wife and two small children going about his daily work on your behalf. But in addition to that, he was also a valued and respected member of the wider police family, a ‘family’ that is shocked, hurt and bereaved at the loss of one of its members, just like any other family. Thankfully one respondent to the article I read in The Mail summed up what many were hopefully thinking.
The usual anti brigade have made visits and posted comments showing their stupidity and ignorance. The sad truth is that the authors of such comments lack the moral fibre and integrity and courage required of all police officers…(Source dailymail.co.uk)
One retired Police Officer and advanced driver commenting on the article also pointed out; many 999 calls are actually made by “people who don’t really need attention that quickly” but the emergency services don’t know that until they actually arrive at the scene of the incident. Rightly he also says “when next you need the police, you will think it’s an emergency and if they don’t get there quickly enough you will criticise them for not being there.”
It’s one of those factors of policing that every officer knows. But still the majority do their job with integrity and professionalism, to the best of their ability. Anyone who truly serves the public (as opposed to themself) fully understands that they will always ‘damned if they do and damned if they don’t’ by an element of our society.
Whatever your warped perception of policing in the UK (mostly thanks to our media methodology), have some bloody respect for the grief and pain of Andrew’s family. If you happen to have some valid complaint about the police service you receive, at least have the common decency to voice it through the appropriate official channels. Any uneducated cowardly muppet with a personal axe to grind can vent their sick spleen on social media – Put up or shut up!
Andrew was simply serving his community and I thank him for that. He was also playing his part in making our society a better place for us all to live; what did you do today to make us feel proud?
Rest in Peace Brother!
- Police officer killed answering 999 call was father of two (telegraph.co.uk)
- Police officer killed in crash (bbc.co.uk)
- Police Death: Tributes To Officer Killed In Crash – Sky News (news.sky.com)
- VIDEO: Tributes to Pc Andrew Bramma (itv.com)